The Church pretends to save man from a hell hereafter, but does it do so? How are we to know whether it does or not? We cannot take its word for it. We want the proof. We do not want to pay for work unless the work is done. We do not want to believe in order to be saved, unless we are sure that the Church can deliver the salvation it takes pay for. The world has taken the promise to save long enough. It has not seen a single soul that has been saved, nor does it know for a fact that a single soul has been saved.
Is it not time that the Church showed that it can do what it claims to do? We want salvation demonstrated. Let the Church produce a specimen of its work; let it exhibit a soul that it has saved, or let it publish the affidavit, duly subscribed and affirmed, of a soul that has escaped the fate of hell through the efficacy of faith in Jesus. Anything less than this is deception, is imposition, is false pretense. Either this should be done by the Church or else it should go out of the salvation-business altogether.
It is astonishing how long the priest has carried on his trade. Here is a man who claims to deal in the affairs of another world for which he demands pay in this world, but he does not show that he carries out his part of the agreement. Men have been paying the priest for thousands of years, for doing what it is impossible to prove has been, or can be done. Can anything more stupid than this be imagined? The business of saving man’s soul is a cheat, a fraud. Every priest and minister who preaches that man can be saved from hell hereafter by believing in Jesus, or anybody else, is preaching what they know nothing about, and they are doing it for the money in it. The Church is cheating man, defrauding him, practicing upon his ignorance, his superstition, his fear.
Religion, as far as it relates to any other life than this, has no foundation. Its God no one knows anything about; its heaven and hell no one has ever seen, nor does anyone know where they are; its whole business is run on fictitious capital.
The only thing that the Church has saved so far is itself.